We live in a “charming” 1930’s cottage on a good sized, overgrown and kind-of-crazy lot very close to Downtown Littleton. It has the kind of backyard that if a neighbor’s kids ball goes sailing over the fence, they might shrug and say “Oh well”. We are working on this and it has gotten better, but it’s a beast of a yard.
Charming is in quotes and the word cottage is always thrown in because, as any of you know if you live in an older home, especially an older home that was left untended for a while, or was added on to or updated during certain decades with no regard for the style of the original home, you enjoy saying Charming Cottage instead of small, old home.
There is a feeling inside an older home that you won’t find in a newer home that appeals to me. They aren’t perfect, they’ve been touched (usually) by many generations, they’ve endured 80’s wallpaper, they’ve had it painted over in the 90’s, they’ve had post-war kitchen upgrades, weird additions added to them, poorly heated porches that have been converted to family rooms, walls knocked out and wood trim painted but there’s something there that I find incredibly interesting and utterly human. I like seeing the flaws, the reclaimed material and the age. Renovations that eradicate this imperfect feeling entirely aren’t as interesting to me.
“It was a mistake to think of houses, old houses, as being empty. They were filled with memories, with the faded echoes of voices. Drops of tears, drops of blood, the ring of laughter, the edge of tempers that had ebbed and flowed between the walls, into the walls, over the years.
Wasn’t it, after all, a kind of life?
And there were houses, he knew it, that breathed. They carried in their wood and stone, their brick and mortar a kind of ego that was nearly, very nearly, human.”
― Nora Roberts,